It just doesn’t feel right, but Butler is one game away from the national title after surviving against a flustered Michigan State squad Saturday. The Bulldogs have made a habit out of playing just well enough to win, while watching opponents self-destruct and implode down the stretch. MSU committed 16 turnovers in what was primarily a halfcourt game, fouled with impunity, and forced the ball inside with little success. Even Tom Izzo looked out of sorts. Izzo forced his team to play with a slow tempo in the first half, highlighting the inability of Korie Lucious to run an organized offensive play in the halfcourt–not gonna happen. Butler’s defense deserves a lot of credit, but Michigan State played horrible on offense.
Duke looks really, really good right right now. The Blue Devils controlled the game against West Virginia, smothering the Mountaineers on the defensive end and dominating on the glass. As well as Duke’s perimeter players performed, the key was the play of Brian Zoubek and Lance Thomas inside. Both are doing something not exhibited by the Blue Devils in quite a while; playing with toughness and doing the little things to win, whether its setting screens or crashing the offensive boards.
We’ll have a preview of the National Championship game later today here on ToTheTin.